The only thing that stopped my family from eating the entire batch of these buttery buns as they came out of the oven, was the promise of burgers for dinner.
adapted from here
550g plain flour (I used "00" flour)
1/3 cup caster sugar
4 1/2 teaspoons (2 sachets) dry yeast
2 teaspoons fine sea salt
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1/2 cup full cream milk, at room temperature
225g unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into 2cm pieces
Egg wash (1 egg beaten with a pinch of salt)
Put the flour, sugar, yeast and salt into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the dough hook, and beat on low briefly to mix.
Add the eggs and milk and beat on low until the mixture starts to clump together. Increase the speed to medium-low and beat for 2 minutes. Scrape the bowl and hook down and beat for a further 2 minutes. Scrape the bowl and hook again.
Keep the mixer at low speed while you add half of the butter, one piece at a time making sure each piece is fully incorporated before adding the next. Stop the mixer, scrape down the bowl and hook, and continue adding the butter piece by piece, until it is all incorporated. Once all the butter has been added, increase the speed to medium-low and beat for 4 minutes. Stop the mixer, scrape down the bowl and hook and beat for a further 4 minutes. The dough should become smooth and shiny and should slap against the sides of the bowl.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead it briefly. The dough will be very soft. Flatten the dough slightly into a disc, then fold the top and bottom edges in towards the centre and both sides in towards the centre. Turn the dough over so that it is smooth-side up. Tuck the edges in underneath to form a tight ball and put it, top-side facing up, into a clean bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and leave in a warm spot to double in size for about 1 hour.
Turn the dough out onto a floured surface to knead again briefly. Form into a ball again, using the same method as before (folding and tucking), until you have a smooth, taught ball.
At this point you have two options. Option 1: You can leave it to double in size at room temperature for an hour. Option 2: You can leave the dough to slowly proof in the refrigerator overnight. Overnight proofing will give you a better flavour. I proofed mine overnight.
If you refrigerated your dough, take it out of the fridge to come to room temperature (at least 2 hours). Line two baking trays with baking paper.
Once the dough is at room temperature, turn it out onto a lightly floured work surface and shape it into a ball using the method above of folding and tucking. Cut the dough into 12 x 90g portions and roll each portion into a tight ball, tucking the edges underneath and making the top as smooth as possible. Put them on the prepared trays, evenly spaced apart to give them room to spread during rising and baking. Spray a tiny little bit of oil on some plastic wrap and cover the buns, oiled side down, loosely to double in size, about an hour.
Preheat the oven to 190C.
Once puffy, lightly brush the tops of the buns with egg wash, making sure the egg wash doesn't drip down the sides (which can inhibit rising during baking) and bake for about 15 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through baking, until the tops are a deep golden brown. Leave to cool on the pans for 10 minutes before transferring to